Easton's Bible Dictionary
House of nothingness; i.e., "of idols", a place in the mountains of Benjamin, east of Bethel (Joshua 7:2 ; 18:12 ; 1 Samuel 13:5 ). In Hosea 4:15 ; 5:8 ; 10:5 it stands for "Bethel" (q.v.), and it is so called because it was no longer the "house of God," but "the house of idols," referring to the calves there worshipped.
The Hawker's Poor Man's Concordance And Dictionary
It is the same place as Bethel. But after Jeroboam, the son of Nebat, who made Israel to sin, set up his golden calves there, the pious among the Israelites called it Beth-aven; meaning, the house of iniquity; for it was no longer proper to call it Beth-el, the house of God. (1 Kings 12:26-33)
Holman Bible Dictionary
(behth-ay' vuhn) Place name meaning, “house of deception” or “of idolatry.” 1. A city near Ai east of Bethel (Joshua 7:2 ). It formed a border of Benjamin (Joshua 18:12 ) and was west of Michmash (1 Samuel 13:5 ). Saul defeated the Philistines here after God used his son Jonathan to start the victory (1 Samuel 14:23 ). The exact location is not known. Suggestions include Burqa, south of Bethel; tell Maryam; and Ai. 2. Hosea used the term as a description of Beth-el. Instead of a house of God, Beth-el had become a house of deception and idolatry. Thus he commanded worshipers to refuse to go there (Hosea 4:15 ), to prepare for battle against an army marching from the south against Benjamin (Hosea 5:8 ), and to be afraid of the golden calves in the worship place of Beth-el, not because they represented the fearful presence of God but because they brought disaster on the nation (Hosea 10:5 ). All the worship places were Aven, deception and idolatry (Hosea 10:8 ).
Hastings' Dictionary of the Bible
BETH-AVEN (‘house of iniquity,’ or ‘idolatry’?). Close to Ai ( Joshua 7:2 ), by the wilderness ( Joshua 18:12 ), north-west of Michmash ( 1 Samuel 13:5 ), and on the way to Aijalon ( 1 Samuel 14:23 ), still inhabited in the 8th cent. b.c. ( Hosea 5:8 ). The ‘calves of Bethaven’ were probably those at Bethel close by ( Hosea 10:5 ). Bethel is probably meant also in Hosea 4:15 ; Hosea 5:8 (see Amos 5:5 ) Hosea 10:8 (Aven).
Hitchcock's Bible Names
The house of vanity; of iniquity of trouble
People's Dictionary of the Bible
Beth-aven (bĕth'â'ven), house of vanity. or idols. A place and desert near Bethel on the east, Joshua 7:2; Joshua 18:12; 1 Samuel 13:5; 1 Samuel 14:23; a name reproachfully used at times for Bethel itself, after the golden calves were there set up, Hosea 4:15; Hosea 10:5; Bethel meaning the "house of God."
American Tract Society Bible Dictionary
A place and desert near Bethel on the east, Joshua 7:2 ; 18:12 ; 1 Samuel 13:5 ; 14:23 . It seems to be reproachfully used at times for Bethel itself, after the golden calves were there set up, Hosea 4:15 ; 10:5 : Beth-el meaning the house of God; and Beth-aven, the house of sin, or of an idol.
- Referred to a valley, perhaps one in place of popularly-known names such as Beth-aven
for Beth-el (Joshua 7:2 ; Joshua 18:12 ). See Beth-aven
- But after Jeroboam, the son of Nebat, who made Israel to sin, set up his golden calves there, the pious among the Israelites called it Beth-aven
; meaning, the house of iniquity; for it was no longer proper to call it Beth-el, the house of God
(bĕth'â'ven), house of vanity
- It seems to be reproachfully used at times for Bethel itself, after the golden calves were there set up, Hosea 4:15 ; 10:5 : Beth-el meaning the house of God; and Beth-aven
, the house of sin, or of an idol
- A contracted form, Hosea 10:8, of Beth-aven
- He also calls it Beth-aven
(‘house of iniquity,’ or ‘idolatry’?)
- Used symbolically in that Beth-el, 'the house of God,' had become Aven or Beth-aven
, that is, 'the house of vanity' because of idolatry
- It lay to the east of Bethel, "beside Beth-aven
- The Jews, in ridicule, changed Baalzebub, the Ekronite "god of flies", into Beelzebul, "god of dung" (which however is zebel , as they changed Beth-el ("house of God") into Beth-aven
("house of vanity"), when the golden calf was set up there
- See Joshua 16:2; Genesis 28:19; Samuel judged there, 1 Samuel 7:16; a place of calf-worship, 1 Kings 12:29; 2 Kings 10:29; called Beth-aven
The wilderness of Beth-aven
and of GIBEON were in the allotment of Benjamin
- Hence the prophet Hosea (Hosea 4:15 ; 5:8 ; 10:5,8 ) calls it in contempt Beth-aven
- " But notwithstanding its being the seat of the sciences, such were its egregious idolatries, that it was nicknamed Aven, or Beth-aven
, "the house of vanity," or idolatry, by the Jews
- From Exodus 23:13, "make no mention of the name of other gods," they thought themselves bound to turn the idols' names into nicknames, as Baal into Bosheth, Beth-aven
for Beth-el, Beel-zebul for Beel-zebub
- Besides those local denominations, others occur which apply to peripheric regions: wildernesses of Shur, of Sin, of Sinai, of Paran, of Ẓin, of Kadesh, of Ethan (or Yam-Suph), of Maon, of Ziph, of Beersheba, of Engedi, of Jeruel, of Beth-aven
, of Edom, of Moab, of Kedemoth
- "Beth-el," the house of God, is named "Beth-aven
," house of vanity, because of the calf worship